April 22, 2004


Every three or four months, we make a large pot of spaghetti sauce:


We then freeze this in two-person portions — one batch usually produces ten to twelve such portions — and have it once every week or two as a good quick dinner.

The recipe is one of my own devising. It started out as a kind of bolognese sauce, but as you’ll soon see, my recipe is not exactly traditional in every detail. The first thing in the pot was the tomatoes: several cans of diced tomatoes and tomato paste.

While the tomatoes were coming up to a simmer, I browned the meat in olive oil in a large pan. First up was the ground beef, which was browned in two batches along with a spoon of minced garlic in each batch. Next I browned the ground pork — this was the first time I used pork as well as beef in this recipe — with more garlic. As each batch of meat was done, it was added to the pot with the tomatoes.

While I was browning the meat, my wife used our KitchenAid food processor to grate, dice, or slice the vegetables. First she grated some carrots which went straight into the pot — the sweetness of the carrots balances the bitterness of the tomatoes. The other vegetables she put through the food processor were then fried by me with again more garlic and olive oil before being added to the pot: diced onions, sliced celery, and sliced mushrooms.

The next stage in the process was the flavourings. I added even more minced garlic straight into the pot, some sugar (again to balance the tomatoes), freshly ground black pepper, and half a bottle of red wine. We didn’t add any salt since we were going to freeze it — we salt at the table instead. We also added a variety of herbs and spices: bay leaves, oregano, basil, lovage, thyme, cinnamon, allspice, and some chili powder to give it some kick.


Once the flavourings were added we left it to simmer for many hours (and several more hours to cool before we could freeze it). Oh, and we enjoyed campari and orange juice while we were making this work-horse of a recipe. We are now provisioned for the summer as far as spaghetti sauce goes.

Posted by Mark at April 22, 2004 04:19 PM